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Trinitarian - May, 2012

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Trinitarian - May, 2012

Text of Trinitarian - May, 2012

  • Trinity Episcopal Church May, 2012 Lawrence, Kansas


    This issue of the Trinitarian is focusing on the many ministries that make Sunday

    worship possible, and I was asked to talk about my role and responsibilities in that

    regard. I suppose that, in light of the fact that so many people are so involved with

    the process, my job is make sure that everyone has done their job. Thankfully this

    is a very easy task on Sundays, because we are blessed with so many responsible

    people here at Trinity.

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    a conversation, or a article I read, or just some random event synchronizes with the

    readings for that week, and becomes the core of the sermon's message.

    But failing that (or in addition to that) I ask myself what one or more of those

    passages are saying to Trinity Church. After preaching pretty consistently for ten

    years, I have usually written at least three sermons on that Sunday's lesson, but a

    previous sermon at another parish isn't always appropriate for this parish. I ask

    myself, what does Trinity today need to hear about these passages of Scripture?

    And I will say, I do think of the parish as a whole -- just in case you sometimes

    thought I might be singling out a particular parishioner (maybe yourself). I also

    ask myself if that message resonates for someone who might have just walked into

    Trinity for the first time. Maybe he or she is coming into a church for the first time

    in their lives that day -- what do they need to hear, in what might be the only

    sermon to which they are exposed? It's a balancing act that all preachers need to

    walk: writing to the people they know are going to be there in addition to the

    people who might be there. This is important, because if we as a church don't

    anticipate the newcomer, we will never have any.

    But if there is one significant

    personal contribution to the Sunday

    worship, it is the preaching of the

    sermon. It's a fairly well-known fact

    that I don't write my sermons down

    beforehand, and haven't for many

    years. But this doesn't mean that I

    don't know what I'm going to say

    before I step into the pulpit! The

    creation process of composing a

    sermon begins for me first thing on

    Monday morning, when I review the

    readings for the upcoming Sunday.

    Sometimes I have even begun

    earlier because my preaching review

    group works two weeks in advance.

    But I am not looking for a sermon

    topic right off the bat; instead I just

    read the passages several times over

    just to familiarize myself with them.

    Then I wait. I wait and see what the

    week brings to me. It's surprising

    how often an offhanded comment in

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    Most importantly, however, I listen to God. There have been some nights where I

    am laying in bed on Saturday and I hear a voice saying, You should talk about this instead, and I scrap the whole thing in favor of whatever new idea has occurred to me.

    So that's an admittedly pretty vague description of the process. When approached

    about the topic of what I do on Sunday, I have to admit my first thought was one of

    appreciation for all the people who do so much to make things go smoothly, both

    staff and volunteers. Having to make sure everything is in its place is pretty easy

    when people contribute continually and responsibly to do their part. This

    Trinitarian is a chance for us to both learn and appreciate all that hard work.


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    Dick Tracy, Rita Tracy, and Steve Segebrecht serve as Deacons to Trinity

    Episcopal Church. The Deaconate is a full and equal order of ministry, especially

    ordered to symbolize and enable Christ-like ministry to those often forgotten: the

    hungry, the poor, the lonely, those persecuted, and all those living on the fringe of

    society. A Deacon functions with the direction of the Rector, and is subject to the

    oversight of the Bishop.

    There are numerous liturgical responsibilities of a Deacon. In the Eucharist, the

    Deacon may read the Gospel, may lead the prayers of the people, and may

    Trinitys Dedicated Deacons

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    introduce the confession. A Deacon waits on the table, assists with others in the

    administration of the Eucharistic elements, dismisses the people, and in general

    acts as herald and attendant. A Deacon performs at the Eucharist each Sunday

    morning, and in the principal liturgies on Christmas, Ash Wednesday, Maundy

    Thursday, Good Friday, the Easter Vigil, Easter, and at other times, as the Rector

    wishes. Our Deacons take the Eucharistic elements to the sick and homebound,

    particularly at Christmas and Easter.

    Trinitys Deacons also assist from time to time at other liturgies in the Parish, such as Holy Matrimony and the Burial Office, if needed. In the absence of a Rector,

    Deacons may also officiate at Baptisms, Holy Matrimony, or at Funerals,

    following the Book of Common Prayer.

    Deacons keep an intercession list to include the prayers of the people, and they

    help organize the praying of the prayers of the people. Deacons help the Rector

    enable, encourage, recognize, and support our Parishioners to perform the servant

    ministry that each has been given through baptism.

    Our Deacons meet regularly with the Rector to discuss the servant ministry of the

    Parish and of the Deacons, as well as any pastoral matters. When problems arise

    which affect the welfare and unity of the parish, our Deacons bring them to the

    Rector, and shall follow his counsel and advice. Deacons keep in communication

    with the Bishop about the needs, concerns, and hopes of the world, and about areas

    in which our Parish might provide ministry to the world. Our Deacons work in the

    world to proclaim the gospel through their work, their family relations, and though

    their examples. Our Deacons strive to bring to the attention of Trinity the needs

    and concerns of the world by being closely involved with the needy and others.

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    Trinitys Altar Guild

    The Altar Guild prepares the chancel and the altar for each Sunday service. The

    Guild consists of three teams, eight members each, who serve for the Sunday

    morning services. A fourth, smaller team tends to the cleaning-up duties after the

    Sunday Evening Solemn High Mass.

    On Saturdays, members set out the Eucharistic Candles on the altar, the Missal

    Stand, the Altar Book, the Gospel Book, and the Vested Communion Chalice.

    Hymn numbers are posted in the Nave. The brass collection plates are polished.

    The Cruets are filled with wine, and the Ciborium, with wafers. All of the candles

    are filled with oil. Other items used in the service are the water pitcher, the lavabo

    bowl, and the linen towel for washing the Celebrants hands. Other linens include the purificators (small towels which a chalice bearer uses to wipe the rim of the

    chalice); and the corporal, a square cloth which the Celebrant places on the altar

    beneath the wine and wafers.

    On each Sunday, after an 8:00 a.m. Service, the Altar Guild prepares for the 10:30

    a.m. Service. Chalices and Purificators are washed. Wafers and wine are set out.

    The Eucharistic Candles are refilled with oil. After the last Service, all of the

    materials used are cleaned as required, and stored in cabinets or the safe in the

    Sacristy. Laundering the linens is a responsibility of the Altar Guild, and each

    team has designated members who do this very necessary task each week.

    Altar Guild Teams each serve four months over the course of a year. The Altar

    Guild Coordinator coordinates the annual schedule, which runs from July to June

    of the next year. The Altar Guild Teams each have a Captain, who draws up the

    schedule for his/her assigned months.

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    The Altar Guild Coordinator meets monthly with Father Rob to discuss the

    services coming up in the next two months in order to coordinate their special

    needs. This information is then sent to the Captains. The Altar Guild Coordinator

    procures the wine, wafers, candle oil, and cleaning supplies, and then oversees the

    care of the vestments.

    Two of the three Altar Guild Teams meet for a polishing session of the brass and

    silver twice each year -- once on a Saturday morning in December (in preparation

    for Christmas); and once in March (in preparation for Easter). Once each year, the

    Guild gets together for fellowship and discussion of matters old and new. This

    year, the annual meeting will be in September.

    New members of the Altar Guild are needed, and always welcome. Training is

    done by each Team Captain, a new member serves with a veteran. A manual with

    instructions and illustrations of the duties is available as a training tool.

    --Joan Ring, Altar Guild Coordinator

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    Trinitys Flower Guild

    The Flower Guild currently has

    five members who volunteer to

    buy and arrange flowers for the

    Altar each Sunday, except durin